Dru-Unreported Face of Homelessness

October 20, 2010

The Unreported Face of Homelessness

When we think of a homeless person, what comes to mind? Generally, what some people used to call bums. People who were unkempt, uneducated, unmotivated, drug addicts, alcoholics, disturbed, mentally diminished or just plain lazy. They could be any one or all of the above. This outdated picture of homelessness doesn’t have much validity in today’s world.

In this economy (where the latest Gallup poll places this month’s unemployment figures as sharply rising, projecting numbers above 10% http://www.gallup.com/poll/143714/gallup-finds-unemployment-mid-october.aspx) there has been an upsurge in the homeless situation for single working parents, who, after government’s cut, simply do not make enough to provide housing, food and clothing on the pittance they take home. Shades of Bob Cratchit (who actually still had a roof over his head despite being desperately poor). Finally, the working homeless are now getting attention from the press and Congress, albeit the wrong kind, as in, “how can we take care of all these poor, downtrodden folks?” This perpetuates the problem rather than solving it.

Just take a glance through the “CRS Report for Congress - Homelessness: Recent Statistics, Targeted Federal Programs, and Recent Legislation
Updated May 31, 2005,” http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/RL30442.pdf, and check pages 19 and 20 of the report to see where all the effort is being channeled and the amount of tax dollars being funneled to help these categories of unfortunate people. In fact, check any statistics compiled by homeless activist groups. Since this report, submitted years before the last recession (an ignored red flag?), the number of programs and allocations has expanded exponentially through new legislation during this administration alone.

Am I advocating that nothing is done to help? No. However, there is a significant category of homelessness that has received no attention, nor does anyone suspect that it even exists. How do I know? Simple, I’m seeing it with my own eyes among individuals of my acquaintance. Who are they? Professionals who have lost their income and are now without a real place to lay their heads, having also lost their homes. Not due to overindulgence, overspending, or taking advantage of the poor underpaid worker class, either, but to businesses that are cutting positions, hours and salaries as they fight to stay afloat. These professionals are living in their cars, under friend’s roofs and anywhere they can find shelter while they work their inadequately paying jobs, as working capital is siphoned by the voracious appetite of Congress that is too busy funneling money to people who won’t work for a living.

Oh yes, I’m heartless and exaggerating. Hardly. These self-starters are just not about to run to Lord Gov for money when things are a little tight, and sometimes dire. I was recently informed that a nearby city is suffering with 47% of its population on food stamps. This is not a good thing, no matter what Mother Pelosi seems to think. It does not boost the economy.

This is an example of what is occurring in the cities and suburbs of our nation to which no one is paying attention:

The conversation was between a customer and the service provider for his cell phone. Let’s start with the background. This is a professional who, due to the downturn in the economy, which dramatically affected his income, now finds himself underemployed and no longer ensconced in his home, having lost it to the plummet in housing market values. He manages to get by depending on his cell phone and e-mail to maintain vital business contacts. When all of a sudden, 24 hours’ worth of imperative communication disappeared from his e-mail account, he called the provider to get the problem fixed. Little did he know what a nasty can of worms he was opening. Not only could they not help him, but after hours of wasted time working with customer service, they were questioning whether he could retain the account since it had been attached to his landline.

“I don’t have a landline anymore, because I no longer have a house,” was the exasperated explanation. The provider was unwilling to accept the fact that the customer still had a cell phone and computer from which he could access the account, but was adamant that the e-mail address was no longer valid if the hardline were not linked to it. As you can imagine, the dialog was circular and I was frustrated just listening to the idiocy that precluded the businessman from retrieving his e-mail.

It’s bad enough losing your home and half your livelihood, having to crash with friends who are themselves struggling. But to have what connection you have to the world, and the possibility of earning a living, yanked from beneath you because of a policy?

It’s no wonder that folks like us are losing ground in America. We are being brushed aside in favor of the “truly needy,” for whom we pay taxes to feed and clothe, only to find that our limited individual resources are being reduced even further. If the working professionals are being disenfranchised, and the “disenfranchised” are being cared for, who is going to pay the ultimate bill? There is no more money to come from businesses and professionals as they begin to find themselves among the homeless, unreported by the media and hopelessly dropping by the curbside. The pitiful homeless cannot be supported by the working homeless, (or by the so-called wealthy), and yet, that is precisely to where Congress is devolving our nation… the productive homeless, or near homeless, paying for the privilege of the non-producers to have a home that they can call their own and can’t afford.

You do the math… it doesn’t add up.

A. Dru Kristenev

A. Dru Kristenev is a citizen of the great Northwest United States, former journalist and author of the Baron Series, novels of political intrigue, world markets and presumptive power brokers based on research of the underpinnings of real-time political and global financial maneuvering, and who’s instigating it.

Don’t miss www.changingwind.org for news links and insightful postings by a legal researcher as Toddy Littman, “Gold Baron” character. Toddy reappears in the new sequel, “Energy Barons.” Read “Land Barons” which introduces the very premise that we see unfolding before our eyes… the sacking of America.

CW.O, the first innovative and interactive website of its kind.

printer friendly create pdf of this news item